Some residents wait days to get water restored, officials say

Madison Water Utility brings in additional equipment to meet cold-weather needs
Some residents wait days to get water restored, officials say

Officials with Madison Water Utility announced Thursday they have received calls from more than 100 customers who don’t have water in their homes due to frozen laterals.

According to the release, in a typical winter the city gets fewer than five calls reporting homes without water due to frozen laterals.

“The situation Madison is currently facing is extremely rare,” the release said.

MWU crews are opening up fire hydrants in some areas to prevent city water mains from freezing, officials said.

Maintenance of a service lateral is generally the responsibility of the homeowner, but MWU offers one lifetime courtesy thaw per property, officials said.

“Our crews have been working almost non-stop, going from home to home for the past several weeks to thaw frozen services,” the release said.

The frost line has extended to 6 feet in some areas, which has caused the list of customers waiting for crews to thaw their lateral to continue to grow, officials said. Some customers may wait two to five days before service can be restored.

“We are in the process of bringing in additional equipment so we can thaw laterals as quickly as possible, and we appreciate our customers’ continued patience as we work through what has been an extremely difficult winter,” the release said.

Officials said homeowners who feel they need water immediately can call a plumber to have their lines thawed, but it will be at their own expense.